COLORS is SAM’s afterschool outreach program that provides underserved youth, ages 6-18, living in greater Spartanburg opportunities for expressing their creativity and imagination. Students work with professional artists to learn about the many different media used in the visual arts.

Our mission is to provide these students with high-quality art instruction in a safe environment during the critical after-school hours, free of charge.* We give our students a vehicle to express themselves in a healthy manner with professional instruction by local artists and introducing them to professional grade materials. There is a strong emphasis on creativity, teamwork and problem solving. The COLORS student is taught the importance of taking care of their studio space, using supplies and working well with others.


COLORS was founded in 1993 as a program of the Spartanburg County Museum of Art (now the Spartanburg Art Museum).  Laura Pinkley originally modeled the program after the Harlem Horizon Art Studio at the Harlem Hospital Center in New York City.  Since its inception, COLORS has served over 3,000 of Spartanburg's youth.

The COLORS program is currently serving over 800 youth this year at the following outreach sites each week:

  • Hendrix Elementary 
  • Duncan Elementary
  • Abner Creek Elementary
  • Carver Middle School

Students create art using:

  • acrylic and watercolor paint
  • colored and graphite pencil
  • charcoal
  • dry pastels and oil pastels
  • printmaking
  • clay
  • mixed media collage

COLORs participants have the opportunity to:

  • visit exhibitions held in the Spartanburg Art Museum as well as other galleries off-site
  • paint murals in the community
  • exhibit their artwork publicly on and off site
  • compete in art contests
  • take field trips

*The museum offers this service for children from lower income families who would otherwise be unable to afford high-level art instruction. Parents/guardians must complete income forms in order to participate.




COLORS is a free program for students during after school hours and is supported in part by the City of Spartanburg, South Carolina Arts Commission, SEW Eurodrive, Inc. and the Arts Partnership of Spartanburg. For more information contact COLORS Program Director, Kathy Wofford (864) 582-7616 x.221 


If you would like to make a contribution to the COLORS program

  • contact Kathy Wofford (864) 582-7616  x221
  • donate online through PayPal


2015-16 School Year Sponsors


Nelly and Kurt Zimmerli

Kathy Zimmerli Wofford

SEW Eurodrive

Rotary Club of Spartanburg

City of Spartanburg



Susu and George Dean Johnson, Jr.

Barnet Foundation

Lea Anne and Mark Zimmerli



Nan and Tom McDaniel

Nancy F. Rainey

The Arkwright Foundation


featured class

Mother's Day Wool Flower Painting (All)
Cecilia Ho, Instructor
Saturday; 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM
May 6th - May 6th, 2017
Tuition: SAM members $40; non-members $45 - 1 week

about us

SAM is funded in part by the Chapman Cultural Center, INC and its donors, the County and City of Spartanburg, and the South Carolina Arts Commission which receives support from The National Endowment for the Arts.



Chapman Cultural Center
200 E. St. John Street
Spartanburg, SC 29306

Closed Mondays

Tues-Sat 10am-5pm
Sundays 1-5pm